Body of Applied Skills and Knowledge
The SHRM BASK® was developed through a series of large-scale research studies that incorporated the viewpoints of thousands of HR professionals from around the world.
What is the SHRM BASK?
In 2011, SHRM began a program of research involving thousands of HR professionals to identify the critical competencies needed for success as an HR professional. This research led to the development of the initial SHRM Competency Model, which defined eight key behavioral competencies (Leadership & Navigation; Ethical Practice; Relationship Management; Communication; Global & Cultural Effectiveness; Business Acumen; Consultation; and Critical Evaluation) and one technical competency (HR Expertise). The SHRM Competency Model represented an important advance for the field of HR by focusing on the types of behaviors that are integral for success in HR.
The SHRM Body of Applied Skills and Knowledge® (SHRM BASK®), formerly the SHRM Body of Competency and Knowledge® (SHRM BoCK®), represents the evolution of the SHRM Competency Model by further defining the knowledge areas in addition to the behavioral competencies. The SHRM BASK was developed through a series of large-scale research studies that incorporated the viewpoints of thousands of HR professionals from around the world. It was most recently updated in 2021, and now includes nine behavioral competencies as well as one technical competency.
In addition to describing the HR field, the SHRM BASK is used to define the content areas of SHRM’s certification examinations: the SHRM Certified Professional (SHRM-CP®) exam for HR professionals in operational roles and the SHRM Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP®) exam for senior-level HR professionals in strategic roles. The two SHRM credentials provide reliable indicators to the global business community that the credential-holder is a recognized expert and leader in the HR field with the necessary capabilities in both aspects of HR practice—competencies and knowledge—that are required for effective job performance.
Further, the SHRM BASK is also the common framework for the item writers who develop SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP exam questions, as well as individuals and organizations developing exam preparation materials. SHRM’s own operations for exam development are separate and independent from its operations for study material development. SHRM observes a strict firewall between these activities to protect the integrity and credibility of the certification exams.